Macron’s criticism of London came in response to a message published by British Prime Minister Boris Johnson on Twitter, in which he asked France to take back migrants who arrived in Britain from the French coast.
Macron said, in response to a question about this message during a press conference in the Italian capital, Rome: “I am surprised by the methods when they are not serious… There is no communication between one official and another about such issues via Twitter and through the publication of messages,” according to AFP.
Macron said Britain must take the migrant crisis “seriously” or remain excluded from discussions on ways to stem the flow of migrants fleeing war and the hardships of living across the English Channel, according to Reuters.
“(EU) ministers will work hard to settle serious issues with those who are serious,” he added. “We will then see how to move forward effectively with the British if they decide to be serious.”
“I am amazed when things are not taken seriously. Leaders do not communicate via tweets or published messages, and we are not slanderers,” Macron added.
A French government spokesman had said earlier that “the British Prime Minister’s letter to Macron, in which he criticized France over the migrant issue, is inappropriate.”
Migrant crossings towards England constitute a point of constant tension between France and Britain, as the British authorities consider that French efforts are insufficient to prevent migrants from sailing from its coasts.
Paris had decided to cancel the participation of the British Home Secretary, Priti Patel, in a meeting scheduled for tomorrow, Sunday, on the migrant file that poisons relations between the two countries, according to AFP.
London called on Paris to reverse its decision, which came after Johnson’s letter asking the French to take back immigrants who arrived illegally in Britain after 27 of them died after their boat sank while trying to cross the English Channel, separating the two countries.
In a letter he sent to Patel, and was seen by Agence France-Presse on Friday, French Interior Minister Gerald Darmannan saw that Johnson’s letter to Macron in itself “constitutes disappointment”, stressing that the decision to publish it is “worse yet.”
Accordingly, he canceled Patel’s participation in the meeting, to which the Ministers in charge of Migration Affairs of Germany, the Netherlands and Belgium, as well as the European Commission, as well as the European Commission had been invited.